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Tuesday, 02 August 2011 21:37

PETALING JAYA: Hundreds of illegal foreign workers were seen milling helplessly at the Immigration Department here on the first day of the biometric registration process under the amnesty programme.

Restaurant helper Horsiyah Sali, 32, from Indonesia, said she had waited since 7am but was informed by an agent for the amnesty programme that there were problems with the online system.
“My friends recommended that I go through an agent but I have no idea how much it would cost,” said Horsiyah.

Another worker, Indonesian Samiya Yazi, said her employers had sent her to the Pusat Bandar Damansara Immigration Department here to be registered.

“Our employers said they would take care of the cost but I am not sure if it will be deducted from our salaries,” she said.

Those who wanted to register directly with the department were told to go to the KL football stadium in Cheras.

The situation in Cheras was much busier with at least 5,000 foreign workers from 21 countries flooding the stadium to register.

An Indonesian contract cleaner, who wanted to be known as Dee', said he arrived at 8am to register but the counters had not been set up yet.

There were separate queues for illegal and legal workers and Immigration officers were on hand to control the crowd.